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Voyages in the Southern Hemisphere, Vol. IVoyaging Accounts
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Rio de Janeiro to Port Desire


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Rio de Janeiro to Port Desire (continued)

much contemptuous neglect as the lion did the knight of La Mancha, began to throw stones at him: of this insult however he did not deign to take the least notice, but continued stretched upon the ground in great tranquillity till the rest of the party came up, and then he very leisurely rose and walked away.

On the 1st of December, our cutter being thoroughly repaired, we took her on board, but the weather was so bad that we could not get off any water: the next day we struck the tents which had been set up at the watering-place, and got all ready for sea. The two wells from which we got our water bear about S.S.E. of the Steeple rock, from which they are distant about two miles and an half; but I fixed a mark near them, that they might be still more easily found than by their bearings. During our stay in this harbour, we sounded every part of it with great care, as high as a ship could go, and found that there is no danger but what may be seen at low water; so that now fresh water is found, though at some distance from the beach, it would be a very convenient place for ships to touch at, if it were not for the rapidity of the tide. The country about the bay abounds with guanicoes, and a great variety of wild fowl, particularly ducks, geese, widgeon, and sea-pies, besides many others for which we have no name. Here is also such plenty of excellent muscles, that a boat may be loaded with them every time it is low water. Wood indeed is scarce, however in some parts of this coast there are bushes, which in a case of necessity might produce a tolerable supply of fuel.

On Wednesday the 5th of December, I unmoored, in order to get out, but the best bower came up foul, and before we could heave short upon the small bower, the tide of ebb made strong; for at this place slack water scarcely continues ten minutes; so that we were obliged to wait till it should be low water. Between five and six in the evening, we weighed, and steered out E.N.E. with a fresh gale at N.N.W.

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© Derived from Volume I of the London 1773 Edition: National Library of Australia call no. FERG 7243, pages 22 - 23, 2004
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